Alzheimer's & Dementia: Through the Looking Glassby Betty Weiss
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“Alzheimer’s & Dementia: Through the Looking Glass,” explains in easy to understand nontechnical language the difference between Alzheimer’s and dementia; discusses issues like driving, hallucinations, delusions, bathing, respite, feeding tubes, hospice, guilt, sexuality, genetics, aging, warning signs, placement or home care, diagnosis, hospice, finding help, emotions and more. Sixty-six columns, and more, from the highly regarded All About Alzheimer’s feature written by the author and published monthly in Today’s Senior Magazine are assembled here to help the family and caregiver through the demanding trials of living with someone who has Alzheimer’s. Few things are as frustrating and maddening as Alzheimer’s and caring for someone with the disease is uniquely different from other medical conditions. In time, the patient is unable to help in his own care, even to follow such simple instructions as ‘stand up’ or ‘sit down,’ creating a difficult situation for everyone. Perhaps you think when someone forgets, you just remind them; no one forgets their own children, how to eat, dress and use the bathroom! But they do! In this book you will learn the difference between your forgetting a word and remembering it later and the Alzheimer’s patient who forgets but cannot remember later because the memory is not just momentarily forgotten—it no longer exists! If it does not exist, it cannot be recalled. You’ll learn things you need to know that will seem counterintuitive and require changes in your normal responses. They are not always easy to use, but they can make life with this disease a bit easier for both the afflicted individuals and those who care for and love them. You will come to understand the basics of the illness, why such bizarre things happen, and how to react to unexpected and on-going problems without making things worse.
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I really loved this book. It is well-written, thoughtful, full of helpful tips on ways to work with loved ones who have dementia. It provides a great deal of insight into dementia and gives the reader a greater understanding of what their loved one is going through. I found it very helpful in my reactions to my mother who is afflicted with this condition. I gained a new appreciation and was much calmer and patient in my dealings with my mom, thanks to the author's wonderful insight and caring for her husband.
I've read many books about dementia and this one is by far the best one. As Betty recites her experiences, I can relate to nearly all of it and what we haven't experienced yet seems to be excellent advice. I dread when we are facing, but it's good to know what's coming and be prepared for it. It would be good if everyone could read this book before the first signs of dementia, but if you're like me, you don't think it could ever happen to you or your spouse.